Lockdown Creativity

Lockdown Workspace
Creative Workspace

“Everyday may not be good, but there is good in every day”, is a quote I read today that possibly resonates with many of us currently.

I have been so surprised and delightfully amazed at people’s resilience and ability to adapt and change, with some even evolving in and around newfound opportunities.

This may be what separates many designers who are in it for the long haul.

I love all aspects of true dressmaking and what it takes to become a seamstress, dressmaker or tailor of note, with impeccable skills.

It takes a creative mind (for sure!), a lateral thinker and a problem solver to navigate some complexities various silhouettes may present.

Not to mention fabric reactions when working with pure silk, linens, cottons and cashmere.

Historically, Cape Town is renown for its skilled artisans in the garment industry.

This bodes well for all as we move towards a more favorable approach to keep this industry locally placed.

We should aspire to “less is more”, when taking into account all the processes involved in getting product to store.

Quality versus quantity should become an important factor for the consumer to consider when making a purchase.

This shows respect for the skill of the true artisan at work, so that they may receive appropriate earnings.

Recycling of fabric and the up-cycling of garments and software furnishings & accessories is the exact thinking all in this industry need to be aspire to.

This may also go a long way to reduce the enormous amount of landfill and its detrimental environmental affect.

Vintage stores popularity points to how some strive for nostalgia of a bygone era when clothes were made to last and often got passed down from the oldest to the youngest member in the family.

I genuinely have fond memories of this and considered it quite a privilege when it would be my turn to receive my older sisters’ ‘hand me downs’.

Both my sisters were super chic and the way they used to style their garments had me convinced that I was going to end up looking just as good!

Seemed like all the motivation I needed.

With extra time on our hands lately, I wonder how many have also found themselves cutting patterns, making masks, knitting, baking, cooking and reading more than ever before.

Learning new technology as we work more remotely and finding Zoom an extremely useful tool keeping us all connected, especially family and all loved ones.

I have the added task of trying to hide from my daughter (fitness guru), who has decided to take me on as her ‘pet project’ for the endless fitness classes circling.

Grateful for the reprieve now as we are allowed to resume exercise and lovely long walks again.

I hope you have enjoyed this blog and would love to hear from you with your thoughts .

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com


20 Questions for Mary……

Fashion Trends, October, 2017

1. Biggest local trend?

Navy is the new black

2. Newest international trend?

Embroidery on a large scale

3. What are your favourite fabrics?

Silk will always be my big love. This season includes silk velvet and faux fur.

4. Shed some light on your best silhouettes?

Duster coats
Lace embossed body suits
High waisted silhouettes
Big sleeves

5. Must have accessories

Choker Silk scarf

6. Favourite colour?

BLACK!!! But at the moment one can’t go wrong with Cameo Brown

7. Predictions for the season ahead?

Yarn Dye Stripes
Embroidery will remain a strong trend
Athletic Inspired pieces
Corsetry Details with eyelets
Low heeled Mules

8. Your ‘go to’ outfit?

Silk Georgette blouse and pencil slit linen skirt

9. Flawless fashion tip?

Wear garments made of natural fabric such as silk, silk blends, cotton and linen voile. Easy elegance and classic styling.

10. A big fashion No No for you?


11. What not to throw away?

Your favorite denim blouse/pants/skirt.

12. How can you change a look in a flash?

Printed silk scarves/pashminas.

13. What are some career highlights?

Attending trade shows like Premier Vision in Paris. Buying and sourcing trips with my daughter. Any launch party of one of my clients. Launching of a stand-alone store in Mayfair, London (for a designer I consulted for) Relocating our studio to Sea Point. Being positioned on the Atlantic coast is magical and helps the creative flow!

14. How do you measure success?

Success is measured by the way in which we approach any challenge. We pride ourselves in being able to harness our clients’ greatest talents. And acknowledge the importance of keeping them motivated through development to ensure the longevity of each one of their collections.

15. Some of your most significant and enjoyable creations?

Marianne Kriel’s wedding dress
Hand beaded silk velvet bespoke dress
The first GEO by George AW17 Collection

16. Any mind blowing discoveries?

I discovered a graphic artist that can hand paint an entire brief onto a shirt button

17. Your greatest self-realization?

I will never tire in my chosen profession. Every day is a challenge. And every day I learn something new.

18. Who is your favourite designer?


19. Your firm favourite garment of all time

My sand washed black silk blouse

20. Any recommendations for young fashionistas

Research and learn as much as possible while acquiring good business acumen before considering launching your own collection.